Seventy-five percent of Americans are chronically dehydrated, meaning most of us don’t drink enough water. While it’s essential to get your ounces in every day, it’s equally important to avoid adding to plastic pollution through the use of single-use plastic water bottles. The best way to do this is by switching to reusable, eco-friendly water bottles for the whole family!
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Americans buy more than 25 billion plastic water bottles a year. Out of every six of those bottles, only one is recycled, meaning the rest end up in landfills, or even worse, our oceans.
It can take up to 1,000 years for a plastic water bottle to break down. Even then, microplastics stick around in the environment for even longer.
Because of the staggering amount of single-use plastic water bottles that are thrown away, landfills are stacked with up to 2 million tons of plastic water bottle waste.
Plastic water bottles are made from fossil fuels. In fact, it takes 17 million barrels of oil to manufacture plastic water bottles every year.
In addition, the chemicals from making plastic water bottles leech into our environment when they’re discarded, which can cause significant environmental harm.
Using plastic water bottles can also lead to health issues like cancer, high blood pressure, and other issues. This is because the chemicals used to make plastic water bottles (PET and BPA) are endocrine disruptors.
Why You Should Switch to Reusable Water Bottles
Eco-friendly water bottles are great for the planet and your bottom line. When you switch to reusable water bottles, you stop paying for cases of plastic water bottles altogether.
Plus, sustainable water bottles, like those made from glass or stainless steel, take a fraction of the energy to manufacture. If you choose the right reusable water bottle, it won’t contain harmful chemicals that can affect your health.
Eco-friendly water bottles are durable, and some can even regulate the temperature of your beverage all day long.
Not to mention, a cute water bottle is a great motivator to stay hydrated!
What to Look For in Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
Like most things, not all reusable water bottles are created equally. You want to avoid reusable water bottles made from sturdy plastic because they can still leach chemicals into your water and pollute the earth.
Instead, look for stainless steel, glass, and heavy metal-free eco-friendly water bottles.
Stainless steel is an excellent choice if you’re looking for a durable water bottle that will last forever. Stainless steel is easy to recycle, which makes it a sustainable choice.
Many stainless steel water bottles come insulated, so you know your drink will stay cold or warm all day long. As the name implies, stainless steel won’t stain or hold onto flavors after a wash.
The downside to stainless steel water bottles is they can be heavy (especially when considering the weight of the beverage), and some people may notice a metallic taste.
Lead in Stainless Steel Water Bottles
Some stainless steel water bottles have exposed lead solder on the bottom of the bottle. This is isolated to insulated stainless steel water bottles.
The exposed lead solder is on the exterior of the water bottle and does not come into contact with the water in the bottle. It can come in contact with your hand or other dishes you are washing, though.
I advise avoiding all stainless steel water bottles with exposed lead solder.
To know if your water bottle has exposed lead on the bottom, flip it over. If there is a black “dot” on the bottom about the size of a dime, it is likely lead solder. This is usually soft, and you can scrape it. Please do NOT scrape it off as it is lead, and scraping will expose you to lead.
Lead is a toxic metal with host of issues including brain damage.
All of the recommended water bottles in this post do not have this concern.
Glass water bottles offer a sleek aesthetic and often come with colorful sleeves to keep the bottle from breaking.
It’s important to note what the protective sleeve is made of since some sleeves are made of plastic. Medical grade silicone is the most sustainable choice for glass water bottle sleeves.
Glass is easily recyclable, making it a sustainable choice. But with a glass water bottle, you don’t have the insulation, they can break, and they can be heavy.
Heavy Metal Free
Look for brands that are completely heavy metal-free. Companies should freely share their testing results with you.
I have also personally tested multiple water bottles for heavy metals to ensure they are heavy metal-free. I share the details on which brands I have tested in the recommended water bottles below.
What to Avoid in Reusable Water Bottles
Several types of reusable water bottles are positioned as healthy and eco-friendly when they’re not! Avoid the materials below.
As I mentioned before, you can find an array of reusable plastic water bottles online and at the store, but they’re still plastic. This means they can still end up in our landfills, oceans, and streams. They take just as long to break down as disposable plastic water bottles.
They also share the same health concerns as disposable plastic water bottles and could expose you to BPA or the BPA replacement BPS. BPS is now showing to be equally as toxic as BPA, linked to endocrine disruption to heart dysregulation.
Some insulated stainless steel bottles contain lead on the bottom exterior of the bottle. See the section above under Stainless Steel Water bottles for additional information on what to look for and what to avoid.
Lead is linked to everything from learning disabilities to brain damage. Make sure to inspect your insulated water bottles if you are buying a brand not recommended here.
Things to Consider When Buying Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
With so many different sustainable water bottle options on the market, you may feel overwhelmed when trying to find the right bottle for you. Here are some things to consider when shopping for reusable water bottles.
Insulated or Not
Most insulated bottles are stainless steel, and they’re typically heavier than non-insulated bottles. The plus side to insulation is that your bottle will maintain the temperature of your beverage, and it won’t sweat!
It’s great for traveling or hiking since it can keep your water cold. Non-insulated bottles are usually lighter (except for glass), but they won’t hold temperature for an extended period of time.
There are various sizes to choose from, regardless of where you’re shopping for your sustainable water bottles.
You want to make sure the size is big enough to keep you hydrated all day but small enough to store in a bag, backpack, or put in a cup holder. There is nothing more frustrating than a water bottle that doesn’t fit well in your car cup holder!
Consider how heavy your reusable water bottles will be when full, as well.
Ease of Washing
Not all reusable water bottles are dishwasher safe. Some require hand washing, which will also require a bottle brush and a straw cleaner if applicable.
You can find eco-friendly water bottles that are dishwasher safe. It all depends on the brand, make, and style of the bottle.
The Best Reusable, Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
Our family uses HydroFlask because their stainless steel water bottles are lead-free, double insulated, and vacuum sealed.
They keep your beverages at temperature for hours and come in various great colors and convenient sizes.
HydoFlask was one of the first companies to move away from using lead solder many years ago. They moved to a lead-free glass alternative. When they made a choice to move away from using lead solder, they lost millions of dollars of profit. I love supporting companies where doing the right thing is above profits!
I have also personally tested my own HydroFlask water bottles with an XRF to ensure it was heavy metal free (and it was!). In addition, I have seen their 3rd party testing showing that they are heavy metal free.
HydroFlasks are heavier than most, so consider the weight added when the bottle is full when purchasing.
Starting Price: $29.95
Dishwasher Safe: All powder coated bottles are dishwasher safe. HydroFlask coffee cups are not dishwasher safe.
Klean Kanteen is a lightweight, stainless steel option. They offer insulated bottles and food containers that are good for the planet and your family.
Klean Kanteen is 100% climate-neutral certified. They’re a family-owned business and donate directly or organizations like One Percent for the Planet.
I’ve tested my own Klean Kanteen stainless steel water bottles with an XRF, and they were heavy-metal free.
Starting Price: $27.95
Dishwasher Safe: Yes
LifeFactory offers BPA/BPS-free glass bottles covered with medical-grade silicone sleeves in a variety of cool colors. The lid is made with #5 polypropylene plastic which is a safer plastic.
Because this bottle is glass, it won’t hold temperature as long as double insulated stainless steel bottles.
I have personally tested LifeFactory bottles with an XRF, and they are free of heavy metals and lead.
Starting Price: $19.99
Dishwasher Safe: Yes
Pura offers stainless steel bottles with medical-grade silicone. These bottles will keep your drinks at the right temperature while keeping your family healthy.
I have personally confirmed with Pura that they do not use lead solder in their insulated bottles anymore and instead use the glass frit alternative. They have also sent me their 3rd party testing showing that Pura is now lead-free.
Starting Price: $19.99
Dishwasher Safe: Yes
Healthy Human makes great stainless steel water bottles with a variety of fun and interesting designs. Who said having a reusable water bottle has to be boring! You’ll love the designs that Healthy Human has.
Like Pura Kiki and HydroFlask, Healthy Human has confirmed with me and shown testing that they do not use lead solder in their insulated bottles and instead use glass frit. I have also tested this bottle with an XRF, and it was lead-free.
Starting Price: $26.99
Dishwasher Safe: No
Yeti offers double insulated, stainless steel bottles that are durable and will stand the test of time. Yeti sells a variety of colors, sizes, and styles so that you can find the perfect bottle for your lifestyle.
I have tested an insulated Yeti that we own with an XRF, and it was lead-free.
Starting Price: $29.99
Dishwasher Safe: Yes
Final Thoughts on Reusable, Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
In short, plastic water bottles can pose a health risk to your family and the planet. Switching to a sustainable water bottle is better for you and the earth!
There are a variety of eco-friendly water bottles to choose from. Any of the brands on this list would be a great addition!
It can be overwhelming to find truly safe products, I have created my Amazon Storefront for vetted non-toxic living products – check it out!
Other Posts Related to Eco-Friendly Water Bottles
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- Non-Toxic Dishes
- Should you use Melamine plates?
Pin it for later!
- 75% of Americans May Suffer From Chronic Dehydration According to Doctors-www.medicaldaily.com
- Plastic Water Bottle Pollution: Where do all the Bottles end up?- www. healthyhumanlife.com
- Plastic Water Bottles are a Danger to your Health- www.azocleantech.com
- Leaching of Heavy Metals from Water Bottle Components into the Drinking Water of Rodents- www.nih.gov
- Basic information about Lead in Drinking Water – www.epa.gov